Picks and Pans Review: It Grows on You

updated 02/02/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/02/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

by Roy Blount Jr.

They don't make'em much funnier than ole Roy, and this time out he's picking on hair. "You can't imagine how bad some people's hair looks," Blount warns us. "There is no way of looking bad that hair hasn't tried." The many photographs by Bob Adelman prove that Blount has once again gotten hold of an important truth about life, and he's going to just worry it to death. "One hair is a prickle," Blount observes, "an abomination in the butter. A lock of it is a totem, a charm, a memento mori. A shock of it can be so soft. A full, developed, tended flow of it is a crown of glory. And a pain in the ass to maintain." In a chapter on folk beliefs, the author debunks the claim that 100 strokes every night with a brush is good for you, and there are sections on cutting, shampooing, dyeing, baldness, wig making and other highly controversial subjects. In a section on New York street hair, Blount quotes blond model Cheryl Rixon as saying, "I don't want it to look too much like a hairdo." What does she want it to look like? he asks. "A tantrum," she replies. In Adelman's photograph of her, blond hair cut many lengths and standing up in wild spikes, Rixon does look like a tantrum. You may never have thought hair was worth a book of its very own, but with Blount at the typewriter, it is. (Doubleday, paper, $12.95)

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